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Category: Business

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Own goal? Robbie Fowler doesn’t appear at his own property academy

Wannabe investors on taster session hear plenty of buzzwords – but few secrets from the Liverpool legend himself Gettin’ Jiggy Wit It is playing as we file into the Stephenson suite in the basement of the Hilton London Euston. Thirteen of us have come …

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ESPN: can The Worldwide Leader in Sports manage its own decline?

The sports broadcaster has been buffeted by layoffs, declining revenue and a stormy political climate. Will it adapt to a changed media landscape?In the summer of 1998, ESPN did what successful American sports entities tend to do: it opened a restauran…

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Premier League clubs agree to screen up to 210 live matches a season

• Increase from 168 a season to make top flight even wealthier• Saturday night live match on the cards in 2019-2022 TV dealPremier League chairmen have voted unanimously in favour of a broadcast tender under which between 190 and 210 games will be show…

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Pro-Brexit British billionaire buys Swiss football club Lausanne

Jim Ratcliffe, founder of chemicals giant Ineos, recently tried to get government subsidies to build successor to Land Rover DefenderIneos, the petrochemicals company founded by billionaire Brexit backer Jim Ratcliffe, has announced plans to buy a Swis…

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Manchester City announce record revenues for 2016-17 but wage bill soars

• Premier League leaders’ turnover reaches new high of £473.4m• Profit down to £1.1m as wage bill rises from £197.6m to £264.1mManchester City posted record revenues of £473.4m in the 2016-17 financial year, with profits down from £20.5m to £1.1m, thou…

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Arsenal and Everton stakeholders’ close ties laid bare in leaked files

Links between Alisher Usmanov and Farhad Moshiri prompt calls for broadening of Premier League ‘dual ownership’ rulesIt is a tale of two major Premier League football clubs. And two billionaires. And how their close relationship and the opaqueness and …

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Arsenal and Everton stakeholders’ close ties laid bare in leaked files

Links between Alisher Usmanov and Farhad Moshiri prompt calls for broadening of Premier League ‘dual ownership’ rulesIt is a tale of two major Premier League football clubs. And two billionaires. And how their close relationship and the opaqueness and …

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Major NFL sponsor Papa John’s says player protests have harmed company

Pizza company says matter should have been ‘nipped in the bud’Founder John Schnatter donated to Donald Trump’s campaignPapa John’s, the official pizza of the NFL, and one of the league’s major sponsors says poor leadership over the player protests are …

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Gambling charity warns betting firms are failing to fund addiction treatment

Bookmakers and betting companies are failing to honour pledge to donate to care, says leading charity GambleAwareGambling firms are failing to honour a pledge to donate part of their income to fund addiction treatment and should be forced to do so by l…

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Arsenal shareholders send message to club’s board with protest votes at AGM

• Resolutions to re-elect Sir Chips Keswick and Josh Kroenke voted down• Stan Kroenke’s votes keep pair on board as Arsène Wenger addresses fansArsenal shareholders used the club’s annual general meeting on Thursday to voice their displeasure at the cu…

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Arsenal shareholders send message to club’s board with protest votes at AGM

• Resolutions to re-elect Sir Chips Keswick and Josh Kroenke voted down• Stan Kroenke’s votes keep pair on board as Arsène Wenger addresses fansArsenal shareholders used the club’s annual general meeting on Thursday to voice their displeasure at the cu…

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Stan Kroenke says he is at Arsenal for long term and has no regrets over Wenger

• ‘Wenger is more focused than ever’ says club’s majority shareholder• American is facing protests from Arsenal fans at AGM on ThursdayStan Kroenke has made it clear he and his family have no intention of ceding control of Arsenal and said that Arsène …

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Newcastle United up for sale – but is Mike Ashley asking too high a price?

After 11 years the controversial owner wants out yet he is also seeking a profit of more than £100m for a Premier League club relegated twice during his tenureA guide to how swimmingly Mike Ashley’s sale of Newcastle United has been proceeding is that …

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Amanda Staveley signs Newcastle non-disclosure agreement before likely bid

• Businesswoman heads Dubai-based firm PCP Capital Partners• Staveley values club at £300m but Mike Ashley is thought to want £400mAmanda Staveley has become the fifth potential buyer of Newcastle United to sign a non-disclosure agreement with the club…

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Arsenal impasse leaves fans with few ways to vent their frustrations | Amy Lawrence

In the mid-1980s Arsenal supporters gathered outside the boardroom to shout ‘sack the board’. But how do today’s fans reach Kroenke and Usmanov?

Len Shackleton, a footballing maverick who was earning the maximum wage of £17 per week by the end of his luminous career in 1957, chose a particularly striking way to outline his disdain for the men who ran football clubs. In his autobiography he dedicated an entire chapter to the occupiers of the boardroom titled “The Average Director’s Knowledge of Football” – it consisted of a single blank page.

Having fallen out with various directors, Shackleton curtly referred to them as “those people upstairs”. It just goes to show that a disconnect between the proletariat and the businessmen who get to make decisions about club affairs is a thread that goes way back in the history of the game.

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Newcastle United investigated over ‘systemic abuse of tax system’

  • Court papers show extent of allegations against Premier League club
  • HMRC alleges Newcastle used ‘sham’ contracts when signing players

Newcastle United are under investigation over alleged “extensive” tax evasion on player transfers, court papers have shown.

Details of the allegations have emerged as the club failed in a legal challenge against search warrants issued to HM Revenue and Customs during Operation Loom, which saw dawn raids by HMRC on premises including St James’ Park as part of a £5m tax investigation involving Premier League and French clubs. The papers show HMRC investigators suspect Newcastle, owned by the billionaire Sports Direct tycoon Mike Ashley, of involvement in an elaborate scheme to evade income tax, VAT and national insurance.

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Facebook is not ruling out bidding for Premier League live matches

• The Premier League is a very important partner of ours, says Facebook chief • Major tech companies expected to join rights battle for 2019-2022

Facebook has refused to rule out entering the bidding to stream live Premier League matches following mounting speculation over a looming rights battle.

Ed Woodward, Manchester United’s vice-chairman, told investors in New York last week that Facebook and Amazon were interested in the last round of Premier League rights deals for 2016-19, which were sold primarily to BSkyB and BT for £8.4bn, and predicted that the tech companies will enter the next auction, which covers the 2019-22 period.

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Force India F1 boss Vijay Mallya re-arrested over money-laundering

Tycoon denies Indian government’s claim he supported his Formula One team with money-laundered cash

Vijay Mallya, the flamboyant multimillionaire co-owner of the Force India Formula One team and self-proclaimed “King of the Good Times”, was arrested on Tuesday over allegations of supporting his F1 team with money-laundered cash.

The Indian government accuses Mallya, 61, of fleeing to the UK to avoid arrest in relation to £1bn of unpaid debts. The crown prosecution service said Mallya was re-arrested on Tuesday on behalf of Indian authorities. “The new charge is essentially showing where the money went to, for example, it is alleged that some of the funds ended up with the Force India racing team,” said the CPS.

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Stan Kroenke makes £525m offer to buy Alisher Usmanov’s Arsenal shares

• Power struggle at Arsenal itensifies as American looks to buy out rival
• Fans fear move would put Kroenke in position to squeeze out shareholders

Arsenal’s majority shareholder, Stan Kroenke, has bid almost £525m to buy out Alisher Usmanov, the second-largest shareholder who has tried several times to wrestle control of the club. Only last May the American resisted Usmanov’s latest attempt at a takeover, and within the past couple of weeks this slow-burning power struggle for full control took a twist as Kroenke offered Usmanov £28,000 per share for the Russian’s stake.

Kroenke owns 67% of Arsenal; Usmanov has a 30.4% stake. The remaining shares belong to minority shareholders, many of whom have preserved a small holding for decades, even passing down the generations. Having two main investors who do not have a working relationship despite having been on the scene for the past 10 years, and who appear to hold one another in low regard, is not a healthy situation. Usmanov has never been able to secure a seat on the board or influence any decision-making, and both men know this will continue with the current awkwardly cut pieces of the Arsenal cake.

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Premier League clubs block big six’s bid for bigger share of TV cash

• Proposal would see end to equal sharing of money from international rights
• Eleven of 14 ‘smaller’ clubs oppose plan presented by Richard Scudamore

The Premier League’s six richest clubs are facing stubborn resistance against their efforts to seek a greater share of income from the next round of multibillion‑pound TV deals.

In a plan believed by the 14 other clubs to be supported by Manchester United, City, Chelsea, Liverpool, Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur, the Premier League is proposing to end the system by which money from international TV rights sales is shared equally by all 20. Richard Scudamore, the Premier League’s chairman, is understood to have presented a proposal to a meeting of the other 14 clubs held at the Pullman Hotel in London on Wednesday, for 35% of the next international TV money to be distributed according to “merit” – where clubs finish in the league.

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